Friday 30 July 2010

Elvis is well and truly gone, but the King is back

Gavin King is back.

King will re-join The Cairns Post as Editor-at-large - a new title, developed especially for the former out-spoken Post columnist.

According to new editor Andrew Holman, Gavin will be the Post's "man around town," and a "key person in developing the voice and spirit of the paper, breaking news, filing in-depth reports, analysis and opinion."

"I am thrilled that someone of Gavin’s experience and stature is 'coming home' after a very successful period with The Sunday Mail," Andrew wrote in a leaked email to CairnsBlog late yesterday. "I am looking forward to his contribution in helping set a challenging news agenda for The Cairns Post as we move towards one of the most critical and exciting periods in the history of this paper."

Gavin King, who has had a regular spot on Radio 4CA's talkback show with John Mackenzie, on top on his duties as North Queensland correspondent with the Sunday Mail, returns to the Post where he was previously Chief of Staff. He Macca radio stint has however become drool and came across as ill-prepared.

It was believed that Gavin King left the paper last year due to serious editorial conflicts with then editor Andrew Webster. His departure was hot on the heels of business and community reporter Roger Dickson, who resigned via a text message.

Andrew Holman's appointment in late May, following the sudden sacking of Webster, has seen a more accessible editor who genuinely wants to reform the paper's preception in the community. One of the more notable Post critics over recent years, has been freelance journalist and local musician Tony Hillier. After Mark Alexander left the top job, Hillier wrote to newly-appointed Webster, who moved from the Innisfail Advocate. He alerted the fresh-faced editor to things that needed attention.

"As the first FNQ editor of The Cairns Post since Alan Hudson, it was hoped that Andrew Webster would elevate the content and the quality of its coverage of local affairs," Hillier said. "Alas, he failed miserably to match the tenor of his early rhetoric. When are we going to get a daily newspaper that merits respect — one that truly reflects life in Cairns and environs?"

In his early editorials, Webster espoused virtues of 'local' and 'community' and wanting to listen to his audience, well aware of past public criticism. However such lofty ideas, rarely materialised.

Taking this recent history on board, Holman has put “rejuvenation’’ on top of King's to-do list, along with strategic touchy-feelie words like "examine" and "reinvent." Holman wants King to "challenge the very core of what they do, in-paper and online." He says that newspapers world-wide are undergoing enormous change. This is true, however few print media have moved and adapted and the massive rate that social media and social networking has virtually reinvented how the world shares its stories. Even though Holman recently appointed a dedicated manager to look after and develop the paper's online presence, it still gets caught out on fundamental faux pas.

"I can think of no better time to be involved in this industry," Andrew Holman wrote in a staff email. "In the meantime, let’s welcome back The King and get this newsroom pumping with energy and excitement."

Over the years Gavin has sent many an email to CairnsBlog, almost all are unfit for publication. However following my extensive investigations about the corrupt and appallingly dysfunctional Cairns community radio, that is pocketing $300,000 public funds with no public accountability, I received a few surprisingly kind and gracious messages of support from Gavin King. Following my enthusiasm, King himself took up the torrid tale in his Sunday Mail columns, giving the story yet another welcome airing. Gavin even suggested that my efforts merited a gong in the Queensland Multi-Media Awards, and with around half a million views during the last 12 months, CairnsBlog probably ranks up there (however, the nomination deadline was yesterday!).

So I too welcome Gavin back. Without Big Kev, this town is lacking in public footballs, and Gavin always provided much journalistic fodder to keep a blogger amused and entertained for a long wet season.

Expect to spot King at all the best eateries, hob-nobbling with those that matter and those that should, and those that just want a favour on page three. Who knows, he may even grant CairnsBlog an interview one day. I'll await the phone call with trepidation and moist excitement.

Anyway, he's not really the King, but I know the odd Queen that would love to knight him.


nocturnal congress said...

Oh hahahaha Mike. I laughed at that last comment. What exactly is his relationship with Kev Byrne and rugnut anyway? A young bloke easily manipulated and flattered at being in the company of two past it pathetic old farts or an immature pup into hero worship and maybe even struggling with some other emotions?

Syd Walker said...

Mike, you write: "I can think of no better time to be involved in this industry," [edior] Andrew Holman wrote in a staff email.

Am I to understand there's a 'leaker' at the Post?

How topical.

Lillian at Yorkeys said...

I think Andrew Holman needs to be brought up to date about Gavin King. We endured nearly 2 years of his anti-Val & anti-Council rants, sexism, homophobia, and tragic, incorrect 'reporting'.

I and many, many others would prefer not to read One More Word created by Gavin King - ever. You should ask why he was booted off the Sunday Mail?? Perhaps his writing was even more tragic than the S.M. could cope with?

If you want to move him on Mr. Holman, may I suggest he could just about cope with the "Cairns Sun"?

The imminent return of GK has just soured an otherwise pleasant Saturday morning.

Monty said...

"Expect to spot King at all the best eateries, hob-nobbling with those that matter...."

And the odd Karaoke Bar judging by the pic.

Bryan Law said...

Lillian, if YOU don't want to read Gavin's writing that's fine by me, but you seem to be saying that no-one else ought be allowed to read him either.

I like Gavin, even though I don't always like what he says. I'm certain that sometimes he's deliberately provocative (something I'd never do), sometimes he's just plain wrong (something I'd never do), and sometimes he gets it absolutely right (something I always do).

One out of three ain't bad.

Lillian at Yorkeys said...

Bryan, Look at mooy, look at mooy -I've got just two words to say to you about Gavin King:
"Crap journalism".

And yes, of course you're always right!

Thaddeus said...

Oh Christ almighty, here we bloody go again, week after week after bloody week of reading asinane tripe about Val's hair. Can someone PUH-LEEEEZE go and throw some grey dye over King's banal head so we can all scoff at him week after week after bloody week?
Where did he get his degree in journalism anyway? At Mickey Mouse college?

curious george said...

"nocturnal congress" you raise an interesting question. What exactly is King's relationship with Byrne and Mackenzie?

CRAG said...

Challege you to publish this in full Mike;
Gavin biggest challenge is to pluck up the Courage to run with the Banksters Home Mortgage Scam story which he ignored last month, as JB chained him self to his roof for 7 hours, while under seige by the St George-Westpac Banksters State Terrorists, who seized his home & possessions.

Unlike Gavin,if you want to know the truth about how the Banksters scam us all ...

:John: Babet, Community Reformation Action Group (CRAG)

Amazed said...

I've learned something today. Do you actually have to have a degree to be a journalist in the Murdoch coven? To be able to cut and paste and be able to be a self opinionated prXXXck?

Stephanie J Watson the Third said...

I want to have Gavin's love-child. I'll hang around the Salt House again this weekend till he prediciably arrives in his sexy black silky shirt and that bitch of a pretend girlfriend.

She's on notice.

Paul said...

"Anyway, he's not really the King, but I know the odd Queen that would love to knight him."

Nice pic. Not bad

ODD QUEEN said...

I have today bestowed the title SIR BORS DE KRAPPUS on this Gavin King person.

EX JOURNO said...

Obviously King had some quid pro quo deal with Mackenzie. One gets the impression that King would only be motivated by "cui bono?". That Mackenzie and King worked in tandem on undermining the Mayor of Cairns was quickly apparent in the similar content of their diatribe. They both reduced any rational, intelligent debate to personal, asinane attacks. King's obvious sneer at older women in his tagging the Mayor "Auntie Val" and several scornful comments on her hair and clothing were not only misogynistic but unwittingly provided readers with an insight into perhaps a troubled and uncertain sexuality. Mackenzie and King both scoffed at the first suggestions of the Cultural Precinct, both tagging it "Val's Volcano" and (amazingly) both claimed it was all about egocentricity. Both Mackenzie and King have been successful in dividing the residents of Cairns to an unprecedented degree. Their unprofessional efforts have changed forever the public's relationship with elected representatives. I dont believe either King or Mackenzie understand how much damage they have done and how never again can Cairns go back to the days when public figures were respected.

Already we have alternate blogsites pillorying Mackenzie and Kev Byrne. We are entering a new era which does not auger well for elected representatives and their unique social contract.

Ex mayor said...

Hmmm, I wonder what “asinane” means. Both “Thaddeus” and “Ex Journo” use it to describe content in Gavin’s writing. I think they must mean “asinine” (extremely or utterly foolish). Does the identical mis-spelling mean that Thaddeus and ex-journo are the same person? But why would anyone want more than one anonymous identity? Especially ones that can’t spell or word-check.